Gaia Mariani Ramsdell


Hometown: Minneapolis, MN

Alma mater: Indiana University Jacobs School of Music, B.M. and Graduate Performance Diploma

Photos by Matt Dine


Appearances: Canton Symphony Orchestra, 2017–18; Round Top Festival Orchestra, 2014–15

What is your earliest memory of classical music? Watching a 13-year-old Sarah Chang play the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto on PBS the same night my family moved into our house. I was 2 years old and spoke my first full sentence: “Mama I want to play the violin!”

When did you realize you wanted to pursue music as a career? To be honest, I’ve always wanted it.

Who is your biggest inspiration? My mama!

Which composer do you feel you connect with the most? Beethoven and Brahms

What is your favorite piece of music, and why do you love it? All of the Brahms symphonies because they make my heart sing.

What is some advice you would give to your younger self? Practice more!

Favorite non-classical musician or band: Princess Nokia

If you could play another instrument, what would it be? Oboe or saxophone

If you weren’t a musician, what would you be doing? Either I’d be a lawyer or an eighteenth-century historian

What is your favorite place you’ve traveled to and why? France—the amazing food, the rich history, and the incredible art.

Which three people, dead or alive, would you like to have dinner with and why? Cardi B, Michelle Obama, and Mozart—because they’re all very charismatic and inspiring and it would be fun to watch them interact.

Piece of advice for a young classical musician: Believe in yourself, ignore the negativity, and support your peers!